Friday, 26 December 2014

Developing Smart Problem Solvers

Nowadays, becoming smart is not enough for students. They must also become problem solvers.
Being a teacher also poses a separate challenge. Technology advancement and the changing of times force teachers to assist students to become individuals who are not only smart in memorizing and obtaining high grades. In the learning process, students must also be shaped into problem solvers.

That is the core of the discovery learning strategy the teachers received in the Pelita Guru Mandiri (PGM) training held by the Tanoto Foundation in Kuantan Singingi District. After several sessions of PGM training, the teachers realized the importance of active participation by the students and that the teachers should also be aware of the ability of each student.

The teaching learning activity also requires an environment that can facilitate the participants’ curiosity. The critical attitude and curiosity of the students should be nurtured so that they continue to develop. This kind of environment is named discovery learning environment in which the students can explore and discover new knowledge and skills properly and sustainably.

For the teachers to be able to apply the discovery learning strategy, there are several stages of the training that the participants have to undergo. In the PGM program, first the training is conducted by local facilitators. After that, the local facilitators give facilitation and training materials to participating teachers at school cluster level. The intention is of course so that the teachers can implement the active, innovative, creative, effective, and joyful learning activity in their respective classes.

SDN 025 Talontam in Riau Province has started the implementation of the discovery learning strategy. The results have started to show in the rising activeness and creativity of the students. The teachers also become more creative in utilizing the simple teaching aids, which materials can be found in the surrounding environment.

Through Pelita Pendidikan, Tanoto Foundation supports the efforts to improve quality of education in rural areas, particularly in North Sumatra, Jambi and Riau. One of its activities, Pelita Guru Mandiri, focuses on building teachers capacity so they can carry out teaching and learning process that is active, creative, innovative, and enjoyable for students. Pelita Pendidikan also includes provision of scholarships for teachers to complete their Undergraduate Degree.

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